Senator John Thune
Earlier this year, environmental groups filed a lawsuit to require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to ban all traditional lead ammunition and fishing tackle under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) of 1976.
According to industry experts, metallic non-traditional ammunition makes up only one percent of the market share. Banning traditional lead shot would likely increase the cost of ammunition and price some sportsmen and women out of the market.
In an effort to combat this extreme action, I introduced a bill in April to prohibit the federal government from banning traditional lead ammunition and fishing tackle and a companion bill was also introduced in the House of Representatives.
Sportsmen and women recently learned that a federal district court judge dismissed part of the environmentalists’ litigation seeking the EPA ban on the use of lead bullets. This ruling is encouraging news for all hunters and outdoorsmen and women.
However, the judge’s ruling did not speak to the issue of lead sinkers and fishing tackle, leaving that issue on the table. Additionally, despite the judge’s decision, this ruling may still be challenged on appeal or in a separate case.
As a co-chair of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus, I will continue to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle, in both Chambers of Congress, to get my legislation enacted into law to ensure these products are not hijacked in the courts by misguided organizations. I am committed to ensuring that future generations of South Dakotans are not unnecessarily restricted from hunting, fishing, and enjoying the great outdoors.